Rebuilding the Temple

House of the Temple in Winter

January-February 2011

By Earl Ihle, 33°, Grand Cross, Director of Development, and Matthew T. Szramoski, 33°, Associate Director of Development

Photo: House of the Temple in Winter (©Maxwell MacKenzie, Washington, D.C.)

The Supreme Council and the House of the Temple Historic Preservation Foundation, Inc., are undertaking the biggest project since the House of the Temple was constructed almost 100 years ago. We are looking forward to restoring and improving the House of the Temple, one of the premiere Masonic landmarks in the United States, to make it and the resources contained within its walls even more relevant to the fraternity and the public at large for future generations.

The Building and the Foundation

The House of the Temple on 1733 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, D.C., is the headquarters of the Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, Southern Jurisdiction (Mother Council of the World). Designed by famed American architect John Russell Pope, the building is an architectural masterpiece and is home to impressive libraries, diverse museums, and ceremonial rooms. The House of the Temple Historic Preservation Foundation, Inc., was established to support and preserve this magnificent building as an architectural landmark, national center for learning, and tribute to Masons, past, present, and future.

The Rebuilding the Temple Campaign

The House of the Temple celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2015. Leading up to this landmark year, the Historic Preservation Foundation plans to raise funds to restore the building and expand upon its ability to serve as an education center. Currently, the House of the Temple’s libraries, museums, and archives house priceless relics, ancient books, and memorabilia from influential Americans such as George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, and Dwight D. Eisenhower. However, many artifacts are not presently displayed in an appropriate setting or stored in the proper environmental conditions. It is the goal of the Foundation to launch the Rebuilding the Temple Campaign to resolve these issues and to fully restore the House of the Temple. With the guidance of the Rebuilding the Temple Campaign Advisory Panel, a select group of Scottish Rite leaders, we will ensure the ultimate completion and success of the House of the Temple’s Campaign.

The Legacy Preserved

Following this Campaign, and the needed restoration work, the House of the Temple will serve as a national center for education, historic preservation, events, and tourism for fellow Masons and all Americans. Visitors from around the world will learn about the Masons and their influence in shaping our nation. Similar to the Washington Monument and the Lincoln Memorial, the House of the Temple will be a national landmark. It will also become a premier venue for conferences and events for Masons, dignitaries, and scholars. The completion of the Campaign will preserve the legacy of Masons in American history, enlightening others and promoting Freemasonry to the next generation.

We encourage all Scottish Rite Masons and others interested in our mission to join us in supporting this vital project. For further information or to make a contribution, please contact either Earl Ihle, 33°, Grand Cross, Director of Development, at 1-866-448-3773, eihle@scottishrite.org; Matt Szramoski, 33°, Associate Director of Development, at 1-866-748-3227, mszramoski@scottishrite.org; Barbara Golden, OES, General Counsel and Campaign Consultant, at 1-202-777-3163, bgolden@scottishrite.org; or Jeri Walker, Development Coordinator, at 202-777-3198, jwalker@scottishrite.org.